Ukraine Crisis: Militants escalate confrontation in eastern Ukraine – Defense Ministry
Militants in Anti-Terrorist Operation area in Donbas do not intend to implement the Minsk agreements and are set to escalate the confrontation, according to the Defense Ministry
“The expansion of the geography of hostilities and the total number of enemy attacks indicate that the enemy is not going to fulfill Minsk agreements and is set to escalate the confrontation,” Oleksandr Motuzianyk, spokesman of the Ukraine Defence Ministry said at the briefing, Joinfo.com reports with reference to UNIAN.
Militants shelled residential areas again, in order to discredit the Ukrainian Armed Forces, this time – in the town of Irmino in Luhansk region. As stated by Chief of General Staff – Chief of the Armed Forces Viktor Muzhenko, in December 2016 and January 2017, the occupation forces violated the ceasefire 1,730 times. The use of weapons banned under the Minsk deal was recorded 693 times.
Muzhenko has met with Deputy Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) to Ukraine Alexander Hug and drew his attention to the increased number of militant attacks.
According to Motuzianyk, over the past day the enemy made 15 attacks in the Luhansk sector of the ATO area, including eight – with the use of heavy weapons. In the Donetsk sector, there were 22 attacks, including 3 with heavy weapons. In the Mariupol direction, the main events were the two clashes with the enemy subversive groups and 23 attacks, including 3 with the use of heavy weapons.
At the same time, the enemy resorts to minor provocations across the front line, even in the usually quiet locations. On January 13, according to the report, the militants fired on Ukrainian positions 62 times, leaving one Ukrainian soldier wounded.
Ukraine Currency Crisis: Central bank intervenes currency exchange market to support hryvnia after it dropped to UAH29 per dollar
The National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) has intervened Ukraine’s interbank currency exchange market on Friday Jan.13 for the first time after the adoption of a new strategy for 2016-2020.
“The National Bank entered the market with the intervention in this form [inquiry about the best exchange rate] to smooth excessive fluctuations caused by temporary factors. The volume of the intervention amounted to $10 million. The average weighted rate, at which the intervention was carried out, stood at UAH 27.687 per $1,” the central bank reported.
I should be noted that on Jan.12, the hryvnia/dollar exchange rate dropped to 29 in the cash market, while euro exceeded UAH30.
Hryvnia’s exchange rate has been plummeting since the nationalizing of the biggest private bank in Ukraine “PrivatBank” in December 2016.
According to the NBU, hryvnia’s rate rose up to 27.70 per dollar by the end of the bidding.
Oles’ Remains Reburial: The Czech Republic allowed transportation of the remains of Oleksandr Oles to Ukraine for reburial
The Czech authorities have allowed transferring the remains of Ukrainian writer Oleksandr Oles to his motherland Ukraine for reburial, according to President Poroshenko, Joinfo.com reports with reference to Ukrainska Pravda.
Oleksandr Oles, the famous 20th-century Ukrainian writer, died in 1944 and was buried in Prague. Ukrainian art patron Volodymyr Mykhailyshyn gave funds to take care of the grave. But recently Mykhailyshyn died and was buried in the same grave where Oles rested. Oles’ remains were exhumed, which caused the wide public reaction in Ukraine.
The next of kin of the writer said they wanted Oles’ to be re-buried in Ukraine. Ukrainian President Poroshenko have charged the Foreign Ministry to make sure that the ashes will be moved to Kyiv for reburial.